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Thread: Install using base OS pacakges

  1. #1
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    Default Install using base OS pacakges

    Hi,

    I would like to deploy Zimbra using base OS packages for all the 3rd party software (like MySQL, Postfix, OpenLDAP etc.) rather than Zimbra-bundled packages. Part of the reason is that we run those on all other machines so we're comfortable with configuration and maintenance there, but when it comes to Zimbra we're not exactly sure what to expect from "modified" versions of those. Does Zimbra (yahoo) really patch software itself or is it just a case of tweaked configs and underlying software is the same as the upstream version ?

    In practice here's what I'm after: I'd like to use Postfix, OpenLDAP and MySQL packages from RedHat (it's our platform of choice). I would also like to consolidate ClamAV services we have (we already run ClamAV on other non-Zimbra machines).

    If the above is an FAQ I would really appreciate some pointers, as I was unable to find anything of substance except for old Wiki entries that suggest that the only thing patched in 4.5 is sleepycat - everything else looks to be vanila copies of upstream.

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the forums

    Sorry but unfortunately that is not possible as Zimbra comes as a bundled solution. This is so that they can validate every component of the architecture, and to ensure no issues will be introduced by a upstream change.

  3. #3
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    Question Re: Install using base OS pacakges

    for example in case of RedHat it's easy to certify things with the stack of specific OS: RedHat doesn't change versions of software within same release branch: 3.x, 4.x, 5.x so API/ABI stay consistent. That is why I'm confused. Zimbra already relies somewhat on underlying OS version so why not offload the rest of maintenance burden onto people who actually do it for living and concentrate on things that Zimbra developers do best (and I mean - BEST ) develop great collaboration software.

    Going back to my original question: so is there any other reason Zimbra uses it's own software stack other than abovementioned "convenince" or "controll of the stack" ?

    P.S.
    I'm trying to figure things out and to not stir things up so please don't take this post as a troll or a flamebait.

  4. #4
    dijichi2 is offline OpenSource Builder & Moderator
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    It's mostly a matter of control - by providing underlying binaries, zimbra can test and guarantee that it will work with the many diverse components it ships with. zimbra uses a lot of specific config that may or may not be available with the versions that ship with an OS. it can also guarantee or reasonably expect the binaries/config it ships with to not be altered or molested by other software/people. it can ship new versions of software and provide new features that are not available with underlying OS packages (particularly with enterprise OSs, the versions can be very old).

    it would be great to just ship core software and depend on the OS, but actually when you look at how it all fits together, the current way of doing things provides much more flexibility, stability and ease of implementation. it would be nearly impossible to use the underlying OS reliably. It also means you can use your standard OS packages for 'normal' use, such as web servers, sql etc.

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    Default Re: matter of control

    If control is the main issue - does that mean that underlying software is unaltered (i.e. vanilla version from upstream) ?

  6. #6
    dijichi2 is offline OpenSource Builder & Moderator
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    no, there are numerous patches through the thirdparty components. nothing major, but not vanilla. in particular, sasl and nginx are altered to talk zimbra-ese.
    Last edited by dijichi2; 10-28-2008 at 10:24 AM.

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